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Theatre For Young Audiences/USA Announces Programming For TYA/USA ON TOUR 

Each TYA/USA on Tour event will feature a live TYA performance, inspiring keynote speakers, professional development breakout sessions, and opportunities to connect .

TYA/USA announces TYA/USA on Tour, a series of one-day events at Seattle Children's Theatre (October 20), First Stage (November 4), and Imagination Stage (November 18) to offer accessible opportunities for arts leaders, educators and artists in the field of Theatre for Young Audiences to participate in in-person professional and artistic exchange.

To expand the TYA/USA conference experience to its national membership, each TYA/USA on Tour event will feature a live TYA performance, inspiring keynote speakers, professional development breakout sessions, and opportunities to connect with colleagues at a culminating reception.

Recognizing the importance of virtual programming as an option for many members, TYA/USA also offers a TYA/USA on Tour Virtual Pass, an online engagement pathway that includes recorded versions of the shows, keynotes, and interactive webinars about the event.

Sponsors for TYA/USA on Tour include National Endowment for the Arts, Children's Theatre Foundation of America, Theatrical Rights Worldwide, Dramatic Publishing, Concord Theatricals, Playhouse Square, and The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.

Program Highlights

October 20: Seattle Children's Theatre (Seattle, WA)

Kicking off TYA/USA on Tour in the Pacific Northwest, the first event at Seattle Children's Theatre will consider how we create new TYA work with a focus on crafting partnerships and community-centered programming.

Attendees will also:

  • see a live performance of The Boy Who Kissed the Sky;

  • hear a keynote conversation featuring Idris Goodwin & Shavonne Coleman with Tiffany Maltos titled "New Play Development & Centering Communities of Color on Stage;" and

  • participate in breakout sessions with facilitators and connect with colleagues at a culminating reception. Breakout sessions include Artistic Advisors Circle at SCT: An Exploration of Alternative Leadership Models with Ramón Esquivel, Shavonne Coleman, & Kevin Malgesini, Reimagining New Play Development: Centering Young People & Community Partners with Mireya Hepner, Robert Castro, Simon Hansen, & José Cruz González, Creative Drama for Mental Wellness with Elizabeth Coen, Jonathan M. Rizzardi, Samora Covington, PsyD, & Brodrick Ryans, and Which Came First, the Book or the Play?: A Community-driven Model for New Work with Olivia Aston Bosworth & Maya Lawrence from the Alliance Theatre.

November 4: First Stage (Milwaukee, WI)

TYA/USA on Tour continues in the Midwest at First Stage, spotlighting the theme of TYA adaptation in action and bringing beloved stories for young people from page to stage.

Attendees will also:

  • see a live performance of Arthur and Friends Make a Musical!

  • hear from keynote speaker, Marc Brown; and

  • participate in breakout sessions with facilitators, and connect with colleagues at a culminating reception. Breakout sessions include Adapting in the TYA World - Serving the Playwright, the Process and the Community with Jeff Frank, John Maclay, & Alvaro Saar Rios, From Casting to Performance: Deaf & Disabled Actors in TYA with Erica Berman & Fran Sillau, Representation and Age Appropriate Casting at First Stage - Why and How? with Jeff Frank, Samantha D. Montgomery, & Melissa L. Wanke, and The Kids Are in Charge: A Toolkit for Youth-Led Curating and Collaboration with Molly Bunder, Reji Simon, & Julie Ritchey from Filament Theatre.

November 18: Imagination Stage (Bethesda, MD)

Our third and final stop will close TYA/USA on Tour in the Mid-Atlantic at Imagination Stage, encouraging attendees to consider the possibilities and scope of our impact by exploring themes of activating social justice and community advocacy through TYA.

Attendees will also:

  • see live performances of Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed: The Rock Experience and 10 Seconds;

  • hear from keynote speakers Greg Reiner & Nancy Daugherty of the National Endowment of the Arts; and

  • participate in breakout sessions with facilitators, and connect with colleagues at a culminating reception. Breakout sessions include Speak Up, Act Out and Break Out with Christopher Totten, Courtney J. Boddie, & ChelseaDee Harrison from The New Victory Theater, New Directions for Digital Theatre Post-COVID with Janet Stanford, David Sabel, & Helen Tovey, Integrating Consent-Forward Practices into Classrooms and Rehearsals with Madeline Geier, Trauma Informed Arts Learning: Spotlight on Theatre for Change with Joanne Seelig Lamparter & Triza Cox from Imagination Stage, Alternative Approaches to Funding and Philanthropy in Social Justice TYA with Suzan Zeder, Michael M. Wood, Sharnita C. Johnson, Hy Hetherington, Miriam Gonzales, & Sarah Bellamy, and Revealing History Through Hyperlocal Theater with Peter Musante.

"TYA/USA is excited to visit our national membership in their own communities at Seattle Children's Theatre, First Stage, and Imagination Stage. The Theatre for Young Audiences field is working tirelessly to develop innovative programming, increase audience accessibility and diversify the works presented onstage. We can't wait to celebrate their work and reconnect in-person for the first time in three years," says Sara Morgulis, TYA/USA Executive Director.

"These convenings will allow us to re-join our colleagues and members and reignite the conversation. Across the landscape of the arts, education and community engagement, we have boundless opportunities to rebuild and reset our course, with our young people at the center," adds Idris Goodwin, TYA/USA Board Chair.

Registration is now open. More information can be found at https://www.tyausa.org/ontour/

Theatre for Young Audiences/USA (TYA/USA) is the leading national organization representing nearly 900 member theatres, organizations, and individual arts professionals across 42 states committed to the professional field of theatre for children, young adults, and families. Dedicated to ensuring that all young people have access to high-quality theatre experiences, TYA/USA offers a variety of programming that connects professionals working in the sector through in-person gatherings and virtual sessions; provides opportunities for field-wide learning and leadership development; disseminates field news and research through a variety of print and online channels; and advances the field both internally and externally through a range of advocacy efforts.

Founded in 1965, TYA/USA is the only theatre organization in the United States which has the development of professional theatre for young audiences and international exchange as its primary mandates. TYA/USA is the United States Center for the International Association of Theatre for Children and Young People (ASSITEJ). TYA/USA hosts an annual national conference and offers a range of professional development opportunities, both for its membership and the greater field. More information can be found at www.tyausa.org.

About Seattle Children's Theatre: As of 2022, Seattle Children Theatre's celebrates its 120th World Premiere since 1975. SCT is proud to be one of the most prominent theatres for young audiences in the United States, with a mission to provide children of all ages and backgrounds access to professional theatre, focusing on new work and theatre education. Current initiatives like SCT for All provide low cost and free tickets to young people and families, and the One & Five program offers free tickets to every first and fifth grade classroom in Seattle Public Schools. Learn more information about these initiatives and more at sct.org.

About First Stage: First Stage is one of the nation's leading theaters for young people and families. Founded in 1987, First Stage touches hearts, engages minds and transforms lives by creating extraordinary theater experiences through professional theater productions that inspire, enlighten and entertain. Its Theater Academy, the nation's largest high-impact theater training program for young people, fosters life skills through stage skills and serves nearly 2,000 students each year. As Wisconsin's leader in arts-integrated education in schools, First Stage's dynamic Theater in Education programs promote literacy, character building and experiential learning throughout the curriculum, serving 20,000 students each year.

About Imagination Stage: Founded 43 years ago, Imagination Stage is a holistic theatre arts organization for all children and youth. Through award-winning professional theatre, arts education, and community-based theatre programming, the organization helps children and young people develop a deep appreciation of theatre arts, while building a sense of self and social understanding. Based in Bethesda, MD, its programming serves children and families throughout the Washington, DC metro area.

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